Kasim Sumaina in Abuja
The Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Amaechi, wednesday hinted that he knew he would return to the federal government cabinet, following a hint from President Muhammadu Buhari.
The minister, while speaking at his swearing-in reception in Abuja, said: “The president told me the same week cabinet was dissolved that ‘I will return you to the cabinet’. I kept it a secret, but I could have announced it to you. So, we knew that God would not allow those who were running helter-skelter to have their way.”
Amaechi, who thanked God for his reappointment, observed that the next thing to do was to make sure that they perform well in the ministry in such a way to please the president and Nigerians, adding that that is extremely key.
According to him, “We are grateful to God for the opportunity to serve again. I know how many of you who were frightened that we would not get the appointment.”
He further urged those who came to celebrate with him to go home and prepare for ward, local government and state congresses, adding that only those who can deliver should be carried along.
The minister said: “Be mindful of those who can betray; they are taking bribe here and there, but I’m not talking about our party or supporters, I am talking about the institutions that are taking bribe here and there.
“Go home and prepare for congress, thank you and God bless you.”
Similarly, a board member of the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC), Maureen Tamuno, while speaking on the minister’s return, said it is a welcome development for the NRC and Nigeria, as there have been a lot of works done in the railway sector.
She expressed hopes that with Amaechi’s return, things would move hastily, and that many cities in Nigeria will be connected by rail lines.
“My expectation is for the minister to ensure that rail transport stands out as an alternative transport in Nigeria. I believe the federal government will also look inwards and make some money available to the railway sector and not just depending on the Chinese alone.
“We have to invest in the rail sector so that it could serve and lessen the pressure on road and air travel as well as cargo movement,” Tamuno stated.